by Ali Holden
3 months ago
To The Progressive Practitioners Of Our Age
My personal journey with nutrition as a healing tool is different from most – I found my way into this field because I was completely and utterly miserable with my job (as opposed to ill health). I left my crappy job and set off in search of my dream future. Initially, I trained in basic counselling skills and reflexology, quickly building a busy practice whilst running my own reflexology college.
Why Naturopathy, then?
Because I realised that I was still ‘doing something to someone’ rather than the individual taking responsibility for their own health. Through education, my clients would come to see that the way they eat, what they drink, how they move and think is what really caused their disease picture (in most cases, anyhoo!) This is why naturopathic medicine works for my students, clients and myself.
What is Naturopathy?
The Naturopathic Nutrition Association describes naturopathy as an ‘art, a science and a philosophy’ that assesses diseases and treats the root cause, not just the presenting symptom. Naturopathy also recommends preventive treatment making it a proactive form of primary healthcare.
As the name suggests, naturopathy used to be called ‘nature cure, ‘ which entrusts nature to heal the body by using the least invasive and least toxic therapies first before moving on to more invasive medication if necessary. Naturopaths believe that there are two principal methods of treating disease. One is combative, the other preventive. The trend of modern medical research and practice is almost entirely along combative lines, while the individual, the progressive physician, learns to work more and more along preventive lines.
The combative method fights disease with disease, poison with poison, and germs with germs and germ products.
The preventive method does not wait until diseases have fully developed and gained ascendancy in the body but concentrates its best endeavours on preventing, by natural methods of treatment, the development of diseases.
Your body is a self-healing organism – which it will do if you stop poisoning it and allow it to cleanse
As a practitioner, I aim to support removing or reducing the toxic load on the individuals’ bodies (through diet, purposeful supplementation and lifestyle) whilst opening routes of elimination so that the body can finally heal itself.
Naturopathy is based on six principles:
- Do not harm – this is why a naturopath will always first choose the most natural remedy to avoid causing side effects or imbalances.
- Identify and treat the cause – treating just the symptom does not prevent the disease from reoccurring. There could be many underlying causes, such as emotional and physical reasons and a family predisposition.
- The healing power of nature – yes, we are animals living on the planet and we acknowledge that nature has an innate (natural) ability to heal – when we remove obstacles to healing.
- Doctor as teacher – to empower clients with knowledge. This is why education is an important part of our treatment plan.
- Treat the whole person – mind, body and soul/spirit. We are an integrated whole, so we need to be treated as such.
- Prevention – recommendations to diet and lifestyle (including avoiding toxins) to prevent
- These principles and philosophies result in a practice that acknowledges each person is
an individual and empowers them to accept greater responsibility in their own health care.
What is Naturopathic Nutrition?
Let food be thy medicine, and let medicine be thy food.
Whilst Naturopathic Nutrition is the practice of nutrition within the context of naturopathic medicine, at The Nutritional Healing Foundation, we base our holistic approach to health on a cellular model; after all, we are our cells.
Once we understand exactly what a cell needs to thrive, we can create the right internal environment for it to do so naturally.
We aim to use food in such a way that we recognise that:
- Individuals have a unique interaction with nutrients.
- Food isn’t just a way to fuel our bodies; it is medicine.
- Food selection, preparation, and eating are healing arts.
- Whole foods are greater than the sum of their parts.
- The practice of Naturopathic Nutrition may include appropriate recommendations
and advice on:
- Individually assessed dietary approaches.
- Optimal food preparation.
- Traditional approaches to detoxification.
- Lifestyle recommendations to optimise dietary therapy.
Full and clear information empowers and encourages individuals to achieve optimal health and well-being.
How is Naturopathic Nutrition different to conventional nutrition?
The main differences between naturopathic nutrition and conventional nutrition are the philosophical approaches used. Naturopaths treat the root cause of disease using a variety of different therapies. We never want to suppress the body’s natural healing processes. We use diet, purposeful supplementation, fasting, hydrotherapy, and naturopathic/Ayurvedic cleansing techniques, as mental therapeutics in such a holistic way that they are combative and preventive. And whilst we comprehensively cover anatomy, physiology, and nutrition science, we do so within the
naturopathic philosophy. Conventional nutrition focuses on treating the symptoms, much like allopathic medicine.
It is important to add that we stay updated with conventional nutrition. There is always more research being done!
Naturopathy supports the whole person.
A naturopathic nutritional therapist:
- Seeks to restore the vital force (energy) of the individual.
- Has a knowledge of disease to help their client find and treat the root cause.
- Supports natural detoxification, electrolyte and pH balance.
- Teaches gentle techniques, such as fasting and sharing the power of whole foods.
- Is mindful of the negative impact of toxins and the benefits of vitamins and minerals.
How do I choose the right practitioner for me?
Personally, I believe that it’s the therapist that we are attracted to as much as the therapy, if it feels right – it is right! Every therapist is different and will apply modalities of their choice to reach the best outcome for their client. Some will have more herbal training, some are also Homoeopaths, whilst others might have trained more in emotional support such as EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) or mindfulness. The more modern naturopathic nutritional therapist now has a diverse range of tools to assist the shift in people’s health and applies evidence-based practice to do this.
Top Tip: Speak to a few therapists first, then be drawn to the one that resonates with you. NB. If you have a chronic disease, advanced disease or life-threatening illness, make sure your therapist is very experienced.
Please feel free to contact our office for details of our postgraduates:
Call: 01749 671555 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
How can a naturopathic nutritionist help you?
In modern times, The Association of Naturopathic Practitioners describes naturopathy as “a system of health care promoting the body’s self-healing mechanism. It uses natural therapies such as nutrition, herbal medicine, acupuncture, homoeopathy, hydrotherapy, physical manipulations, fasting, exercise and other modalities, in
accordance with naturopathic principles”.
Healing is a marathon, not a sprint.
These principles are considered when a naturopath takes a case and when developing and offering treatment plans and maintenance support for long-term good health. So, in reductive terms, a naturopath is like an alternative GP – he or she has many tools in their kit bag to use to bring the individual back to good health, and has training in all these
areas, but doesn’t solely specialise in one.
The areas we typically look at when first starting to work with a client are:
- Address hydration
- Address stress
- Support digestion
- Support liver
- Regulate blood sugar
- Balance essential fatty acids
- Balance electrolytes
- Open routes of elimination
- Much more
Whatever the body can create – it can uncreate. This approach renews hope for individuals who are affected by daily ailments or those suffering from more chronic conditions.
To your good health,